Nicknamed "The Gathering Place", Oahu (O'ahu to the locals) is the third largest, best known, and most visited among all the islands of Hawaii. Perfect weather (65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit) throughout the year, coastal rainfall, beautiful valleys, breathtaking waterfalls, majestic mountains, and the best sunsets that you may ever see, are some of its characteristics. Add to this, the wonderful white sand beaches that are a paradise, if you love surfing or snorkeling. There are plenty of flights daily from the US to the Hawaiian capital called Honolulu. Cruise ships leave from most of the US sea ports for Hawaii.
The island of Oahu offers over 125 pristine white sand beaches, luxury hotels, a great nightlife, good food, and entertainment. Nature and history lovers have a lot to enjoy in this place.
Situated on Kailua Bay, the ocean is calmer than most other beaches. The waves are great for those who are learning to surf.
Kailua Beach Park
Situated in East Oahu, this is one the best beaches with clean and fine sand. It is perfect for sunbathing and windsurfing.
Access to this beach is via public walkways, and it has very fine and soft sand. This place is ideal for swimming, sailing, and windsurfing.
It is a haven for snorkelers and divers, as it is rich in marine life and has a large live coral reef. This bay is a Marine Life Conservation Area, where pets, alcohol, and fishing are not allowed.
This is undoubtedly one of the most well-known beaches in the world, and also is one of the most crowded beaches throughout the year. Fine, clean, and soft sand is found on this one and a half mile-long beach. The world's longest running beach parties can be found in this area.
A must visit for anyone holidaying in Oahu. This beach has a 30-acre public park with picnic tables, restrooms, food courts, and a public boat ramp. It is great for swimming, windsurfing, and snorkeling. It can get very crowded during weekends.
It is also called the "Surfers Paradise". Waves can reach a peak of 20 feet during the winter. If you are in Oahu during this season, you can just come here and watch the professional surfers ride the huge waves. During summer the waves calm down, and Sunset beach becomes ideal for swimming.
Another fascinating place for the surfers. During winters, waves can rise 30 feet, giving the jitters even to professional surfers. During the summers, it becomes ideal for swimming and snorkeling.
Located on South King Street in downtown Honolulu, this palace was completed in 1882, and it is the only royal palace in the US. Guided tours are conducted every 15 minutes, from 9 a.m. To 2.15 p.m. from Tuesday to Saturday.
This war memorial is dedicated to the 102 soldiers who were killed in World War I. It was built in 1927, and is situated on the Waikiki beach.
The US Army Museum
In this place, you will get to know the role that Hawaii played in military matters, right from World War I to the Vietnam conflict. Situated at Fort DeRussy in Waikiki, it is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Daily, except on Monday.
One of the most symbolic representations of Oahu, this tower is situated in Honolulu Harbor. Built in 1926, it was the tallest tower till the late 60s. You can go to its 10th floor (daily from 9 a.m. to sunset time), to get a magnificent view of Honolulu and the harbor.
Undoubtedly, the most famous volcanic crater in the world, it is situated at the end of Waikiki, and overlooks the Pacific ocean. Originally known as Laeahi (brow of the tuna), its new name was given by British sailors in the 1800s. The hike to its top should take approximately one and a half hours, and is of moderate intensity. It consists of an unlit tunnel; you must carry your own torchlight.
Situated in Waikiki, it was built in 1915 to protect Honolulu and Pearl Harbor.
Hawaii Convention Center
Located in Honolulu, it is built on 10 acres, consists of 2,00,000 square feet exhibit space, a rooftop garden, and plenty of parking space. It consists of more than 1 million square feet of space, with regards to its total size.
Situated at the Diamond Head in Waikiki on an area of approximately 42 acres, it showcases many birds that are native to Hawaii. Many animals roam free on 12 acres of barricaded land. A wonderful place to visit, especially if you have kids, this zoo is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Noted for its coral reef exhibits, this place allows you to have a close look at reef sharks and other fish, sea jellies, living coral, etc., and is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
There are many more places that you can visit in Oahu like:
- Waimea Falls - North Shore
- Washington House - Honolulu
- Pacific Aerospace Museum - Honolulu International Airport
- Mission House Museum - Honolulu
- Japanese Cultural Center - Honolulu
- Hawaii Maritime Center - Honolulu Harbor
- Arizona Memorial - Pearl Harbor
- Makapu Lighthouse - Windward coast
- Wizard Stones - Waikiki
Caution at Oahu Beaches
While at any beach on this island, always obey all postings and warnings. Some of the beaches are unpredictable, especially during the winter months.